Guidelines

AS OF JUNE 21, 2020:
 

Beloved parishioners,

Following a period of severe restrictions caused by the Covid-19 crisis, our Church re-opened on Sunday, June 21, 2020 for Orthros and Divine Liturgy. We will continue to celebrate these services.

We ask for your continued patience and good will as we go through this next stage. We are currently limited to 25% capacity. Our plan is to be at the Holy Cross Chapel in Lancaster (25 people limit). If more than 25 people express their desire to attend, services will take place at the Annunciation Church in downtown Buffalo (100 people limit). We will keep this restriction in place for the weeks to come, until conditions allow greater participation. 

If you wish to attend on a Sunday, please email Fr. Christos at frchristos@yahoo.com or call/text at (716) 319-0099 by Saturday 5:00pm. He will place your name on the list of people attending. Please note that only those who have notified him and have been placed on the list of attendees can be present on any given Sunday. Unfortunately, at this time, we cannot accommodate any “walk-ins”. Additionally, if you attend, note that you will be expected to follow the guidelines below we have received from the Metropolis of Detroit.

How You Should Prepare to Attend Church

  • Please be patient. We want you to return, but we want it to be accomplished in a safe and organized manner.

  • Those who have pre-existing health conditions and those who are over age 65 are requested not to attend services.

  • If you are exhibiting any signs of illness, even symptoms not related to COVID-19, we ask that, for your own safety and those around you, please do not attend services.

  • It will be necessary for you to wear a mask at all times inside the Church. If you arrive without one, a Parish Council member will provide you with one.

  • Please bring hand sanitizer with you. There will also be hand sanitizer available in the Narthex to use upon your arrival to Church.

Some Procedures You Should Expect When Coming to Church

  • A sign-up procedure will be established to strictly adhere to attendance guidelines. Parish Council members will assist you in the Narthex upon entering the Church.

  • Only the main doors at the front of the Church will be open. Side doors and back entrances will be closed so that attendance and safety practices are carefully followed. If you have a mobility problem with the steps, please let Father know and we will make other arrangements for you.

  • Parental supervision is required for children over the age of 3 who are wearing masks. Children under the age of 2 are exempt from wearing masks.

  • Your attendance will be recorded, including your current phone number. In case contact tracing becomes necessary, the Parish will have a clear record of who was present for each service.

What You Should Expect When in Church

  • Families that live together will be seated together. Relatives who do not reside in your immediate household will be seated separately  (please follow the instructions of the Parish Council members who will be ushering you in).

  • You may venerate icons by bowing, but kissing or touching are prohibited.

  • Parish bulletins will only be distributed electronically.

  • Liturgical books are not permitted in the pews. You can bring your own books. Online resources are available for you to follow the services. 

  • When the service has concluded, please promptly follow the directional signage to exit the Church safely.

  • Parishioners are kindly requested not to linger on the Church property. No social gatherings or coffee fellowship will take place.

  • After each service, the Church will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized.

As you can see, our Church life will be quite different from what we are used to. But with God's direction and guidance, and your love and patience, I am certain we will successfully get through this next stage. The day will come when we once again can celebrate all our traditions and services together in our accustomed manner. Until then, let us be grateful for how far we have gotten through this great health crisis, and live in hope and love for our God. 

Yours in Christ,

Fr. Christos B. Christakis